- Secretary of the Army Eric FanningSecretary of the Army
- MG Jeffrey BuchananCommanding General, Military District of Washington
- Honorable Debra S. WadaAssistant Secretary of the Army Manpower and Reserve Affairs
- Charles SchumerSenator
- Sean MaloneyRepresentative
Review an innocent soldier’s wrongful conviction
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My name is Ken Pinkela. I am a US Army Lieutenant Colonel, and in June 2012, I was wrongly convicted of exposing someone to the HIV virus. Since then, the main witness against me has recanted, explaining how he was coerced into giving misleading testimony. I am fighting to have my case reviewed by President Obama and Secretary of the Army John McHugh, as they are the only 2 officials authorized to directly order a review and change the outcome of a military court-martial.
I served my country for more than 26 years in the US Army and now that sacrifice has been erased by my wrongful conviction for exposing another soldier to HIV. Not only am I innocent--the accuser and I were never intimate--the Department of Defense has been criticized for prosecuting people with HIV, bringing charges in cases like mine that are not based on any medically accurate understanding of how HIV is transmitted and treated.
Without any real evidence, I was convicted, spent 272 days in prison, and lost all my benefits: retirement, medical insurance for both combat related injuries and the HIV treatment that I require. I won't even get a flag for my coffin when I die. According to the Army, I am a felon, and if I leave New York State I will be required to register as a sex offender. These charges have ruined my life. I have lost the freedom which I fought to defend for nearly three decades. And I have lost the honor of being able to serve my country. My final hope is to get my case reviewed.
The prosecution's only witness has recanted his testimony. He describes being threatened by Army prosecutors, being lied to and says that the prosecution led him in his testimony. This should be reason enough to have my case reexamined and get the charges against me dismissed. That will allow me to get my life back and continue to serve my country and support my family. Please join me in asking President Obama and Secretary of the Army John McHugh to grant me a review of my court-martial, so that I can begin to serve my country with honor and dignity again.
- Secretary of the Army
Secretary of the Army Eric Fanning
- Commanding General, Military District of Washington
MG Jeffrey Buchanan
- Assistant Secretary of the Army Manpower and Reserve Affairs
Honorable Debra S. Wada
Direct a review of the process and case against LTC Kenneth Pinkela and order the dismissal of all charges.
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